Stuff You Should Know's Nicotine Quiz

By: Charles W. Bryant

Stuff You Should Know's Nicotine Quiz
Image: BSIP/Universal Images Group/Getty Images

About This Quiz

If you're an American and you're reading this, then there's about a 30 percent chance you're addicted to nicotine. If you listened to this podcast, then you should have no problem scoring well.
How early was tobacco cultivated?
A.D. 1200
A.D. 950
6000 B.C.
You'll have to go pretty far back to get to the beginnings of humans using nicotine -- all the way back to 6000 B.C.

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Where was tobacco first cultivated?
Europe
Africa
The Americas
Tobacco use originated in the Americas and was exported to Europe once the Americas were colonized.

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True or false: Tobacco was believed to protect people from plague.
TRUE
Tobacco was believed to guard and protect against many illnesses and diseases, including plague.
FALSE

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What percentage of the tobacco plant is made up of nicotine?
20 percent
5 percent
There isn't a lot of nicotine in the tobacco plant -- only about 5 percent, in fact.
30 percent

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How much of the 8 to 20 milligrams of nicotine in a cigarette is absorbed by the body?
1 to 2 milligrams
If you absorbed more than 1 to 2 milligrams of nicotine from a cigarette, you'd be pretty sick every time you puffed.
5 to 7 milligrams
all of it

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Which is the quickest way to get nicotine into the body?
snorting
through the gums
cheeks
People sniff tobacco and dip it between their cheek and gums, but inhaling it is easily the most expedient way to get nicotine into your system.

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True or false: The brain is pretty much the first stop for nicotine once it enters your body.
TRUE
True, the brain is the first place that nicotine goes once it's absorbed into the body.
FALSE

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What is the half-life for nicotine in the human body?
three hours
60 minutes
Nicotine has a half-life of about one hour -- that's 60 minutes to you and me.
15 minutes

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It's believed that nicotine may block the release of what hormone?
insulin
Experts agree that nicotine most likely blocks the release of insulin, making smokers slightly hyperglycemic.
ghrelin
leptin

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How many chemicals are present in a tobacco plant?
about 4,000
It's tough to believe, but there are roughly 4,000 chemicals at work in a tobacco plant.
about 500
about 300

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The small proteins the body creates in response to nicotine are called what?
endorphins
They're called endorphins, and they make you feel good, which is one reason why people who smoke continue to smoke.
collagen
oxytocin

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What is one disease for which nicotine may actually serve a therapeutic purpose?
Tourette's
Alzheimer's
both
Both Tourette's and Alzheimer's sufferers are believed to receive some therapeutic benefit from measured nicotine use.

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Roughly what percentage of people who try to quit smoking are successful?
35 percent
10 percent
The number is low, but it's not 2 percent. About 10 percent of people who try to quit smoking are ultimately successful.
2 percent

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What percentage of all deaths in the United States each year are due to cigarette smoking?
10 percent
5 percent
20 percent
It's a shocking number for sure. Roughly 20 percent of all deaths in the United States each year are from smoking cigarettes.

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When a person smokes, how long does it take nicotine to reach the brain?
30 seconds
60 seconds
7 seconds
Nicotine hits the brain in just 7 seconds. That's twice as long as it takes injected heroin to reach the brain.

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How many Americans successfully quit smoking each year?
about 3.5 million
about 1.3 million
Forty-eight million continue to smoke, but 1.3 million Americans are able to quit each year.
about 5.5 million

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How much money does the tobacco industry spend each year marketing its cigarettes?
$4 billion
Smoking kills people. This means that cigarette companies spend a lot of money in marketing -- we're talking $4 billion per year.
$750 million
$1 billion

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On average, non-smokers live how many more years than smokers?
three to four years
13 to 14 years
If you're a smoker, then you can count on checking out about 13 to 14 years sooner than your non-smoking friends and family. Something to think about, huh?
eight to nine years

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Worldwide, tobacco use kills how many people each year?
4 million
3 million
5 million
Smoking is popular all over the world. So much so that it kills about 5 million people per year.

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True or false: Nicotine is addictive.
TRUE
There has been some speculation over the years, but nicotine is definitely addictive.
FALSE

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You Got:
/20
BSIP/Universal Images Group/Getty Images

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